Anna Wenner @Anna_Wenner@msmariavicente @ericsmithrocks Hello! Thanks for doing this!
Is it rude to do a twitter pitching event if someone has your partial or full? It never occurred to me that it might be but someone mentioned it and now I’m worried.
Nope! I don't think writers should ever send "exclusive" submissions to agents. If you're waiting for an offer of rep, you're of course welcome to pitch to more agents.
KFair Writes @kfairwrites@msmariavicente Do you have any pet peeves when it comes to NF proposals?
I'm working (& working) on my first & every agency seems to have different guidelines, which requires a lot of tailoring. I don't mind that, but it's been difficult to reach the "I'm done" phase. #askagent
I would take NF proposal advice as guidelines to follow. They always look different depending on the topic. I don't have any pet peeves, but I do think many are missing the important information on why YOU should be the one to write the book.
Alexandra Z. Lazar @alexandrazlazar@msmariavicente I know that fantasy books tend to be longer than other genres, but what would you say is the outer edge of acceptable word counts for YA fantasy?
Adam Breckenridge @agbreckenridge@msmariavicente Hi, I'm working on a fantasy novel right now that's the first in a planned trilogy. When I get around to querying do I want to try to pitch the whole trilogy, just focus on the first book, or some combination between the two? I really appreciate you taking the time to do this.
The pitch should focus on the first book and then say it's the first in a planned trilogy.
Kaylen Wade @kaylen_wade@msmariavicente Why might an agent not report all their sales to Publishers Marketplace, assuming enough time has passed that it’s not a secret anymore? #askagent
This is so specific to each agent, client, book. One reason might be that it’s a work-for-hire project, so while the agent may have negotiated an offer/contract, they didn’t technically “sell” the project. That’s just an example though!
Caitlin Cross @caitlincross@msmariavicente @ericsmithrocks I’m getting close to the end of the first draft of my YA contemporary rock stars WIP and I’m wondering as I go into editing mode, how much swearing is too much for YA? Lol not sure if there’s a specific ~limit~ but if you have any insight, that’d be great! Thank you! 😊
I wouldn’t use curse words unnecessarily, but teens definitely swear so I think it makes a ms pretty authentic. It’s something that can always be edited down later depending on the publisher.
SheGoesON @shegoeso@msmariavicente @ericsmithrocks Any advice for someone interested in becoming an agent? Google searches have been very unhelpful.
Internships at agencies are the way to go. You need to learn from someone actually in the role.
Elizabeth @EliMartinsBooks@msmariavicente @ericsmithrocks How long would you like an author to wait to follow up to a query or full request, if at all?
Agency websites typically have guidelines posted for response times, especially for queries. So wait until after that. I’d wait 4-6 months to ask on an update for a full ms request.
KRISTINE ESSER SLENTZ @KESLENTZ@msmariavicente @ericsmithrocks Good morning! I'm a poet but write a lot of hybrid and cross-genre work. Is there a place for me in publishing/obtaining an agent? If so, is there a best strategy?
Of course there is! Find books similar to what you’re writing and see where they were published, who represents those authors. Should be a good starting point.
Ian Roy @ian_roy@msmariavicente Good morning. I've been seeing an increasing number of smaller presses acquiring titles via agents. Is this more common now? Or have I just been oblivious to this practice?
It has always happened. Sometimes they’re the best fit for a book. And even though smaller pubs might accept unagented submissions, creators might want an agent to help negotiate offers, contracts, etc.
Ian Sandusky @IanSandusky@msmariavicente Hi! Horror seems to be a seldom-listed category on most agent's lists - out of curiosity, is there a reason for it?
No reason other than personal preference, I don’t think. Some peoplw just don’t like horror.
I’ve personally noticed an increasing interest in horror. Maybe search for agents looking for “speculative” fiction rather than horror specifically?
Colleen Hennessy @colleenhenness4@msmariavicente Morning, is there any point in querying agents with essay collection or should I focus on trying to get individ essays published in lit journals first? Have previous freelance journ pubs but no literary. Thanks!
Great question! If the overall concept for the collection is unique enough, it will intrigue agents. However, having essays in prominent publications will help sell the book to publishers.
S.P. Sabo @S_P_Sabo@laurenspieller I’m late to the party, but I have a question.
Does it give you red flags if a writer says their MS is a mixture of different genres? My MS doesn’t fit neatly into one category and my beta readers say they’ve never read anything like it. If it’s a good story, does genre matter?
I love things that blend genre but at the end of the day I need to know what shelf this book is going to sit on. #askagent
Lauren Spieller 📖 @laurenspiellerHonestly I am torn about this because on the one hand I do think revealing your age might color the agent’s perspective, but I also like to know when I am talking to someone underage because I am far more likely to give specific feedback should I pass. (1/2) twitter.com/MarlaTerry1/st…
That being said: I have a client who was 17 when I signed her! Her writing was fantastic and when we moved forward I made sure to speak with her parents so that they would be involved. We also had them co-sign her agency agreement. (2/2) #askagent
LBurd is querying @LisaBurdige@laurenspieller I heard you are not supposed to call your work "literary" aka a "literary contemporary fantasy" because it's not to you to decide if your work is "literary." Is that true? And thanks for doing this
Nope! In publishing, literary refers to style and genre more than it does quality. If you are writing Literary Fantasy then you should absolutely call it that. #askagent
M. Barbier @queen_mab1@laurenspieller If you’ve sent an agent additionally requested pages and not heard back after a while (months), is there a length of time later at which it is polite to email them to ask whether they’ve had a chance to review the pages? Or is that frowned upon? Thanks!
You can absolutely nudge! This is your work and your career so you should always feel comfortable following up as long as a reasonable amount of time has passed. (Personally I think six weeks is reasonable but others might disagree). #askagent
Leslie Scott @leslieSwrites@laurenspieller When you reject a manuscript you actually liked (but didn't fit right for you), do you ask for a resub of other projects? If so, do you remember those authors down the line when they do resub?
Yes and yes (though it helps if they remind me in their query if I’ve read something of theirs before!) #askagent
Crystal Lamb @CrystalLambLit@laurenspieller Hey there (and thanks). How soon after a MS is rejected by one agent in the same agency would it be acceptable to query another agent on a different MS? I've always wondered that. Thanks a bunch for taking questions!
As long as there’s no official rule, you can query right away #askagent
Maureen O’Leary @Maureenow@laurenspieller Do you have any thoughts about building a career writing adult and young adult fiction? Is this a difficult sort of career to manage?
Tons of people do this. See: Heard, Schwab, Bardugo, Oliver. #askagent
annemarie @annemariepett@laurenspieller Do you have any recs on a book that does one element of craft really well? Like, a book with great pacing, or unique voice?
Ooo fun! Off the top of my head:
Voice: GIDEON or The Bartimaeus Trilogy
Pacing: Hunger Games or Six of Crows
Worldbuilding: SCORPIO RACES or COLDEST GIRL IN COLD TOWN